Downton Abbey 607 - Joanne Froggatt
Downton Abbey 607 - Anna Bates (Joanne Froggatt) ©2015 Carnival Film & Television, photo by Nick Briggs

Yesterday at the TV Critics tour, British actress Joanne Froggatt introduced her new role, the first female serial killer in England named Mary Ann Cotton in PBS’ Masterpiece: Dark Angel.

Dark Angel - Joanne Froggatt
Dark Angel – the first female serial killer in England named Mary Ann Cotton (Joanne Froggatt) ©2016 PBS

Quite a drastic change from her noble Anna Bates on PBS’ Downton Abbey, which she acknowledges. “People kept saying to me what did I want to do after Downton?” I jokingly kept saying, “Oh, I don’t know. Something completely different. Play a murderer or something.”

“And then this script came along, and I just thought I’ve got to put my money where my mouth is, because someone has just handed it to me on a plate.”

How did her Downton co-stars react to her new role? “Everyone was really please for me,” the actress recalls, “because I was really excited about doing it. It was a very different challenge from playing Anna, and a script I felt incredibly passionate about”.

“Actually Kevin Doyle, who plays Mr Mosley (on Downton Abbey), his next role is also a serial killer. So me and Kevin were swapping notes on it, and starting to learn our lines for the next thing.”

There is no premiere date for the 3 hour mini-series either in England or the States, but it is slated to play something this year.

Joanne Froggatt Soundbyte

Joanne was asked if having this role to go to helped her say goodbye to Downton Abbey? Click here for her reply

Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter.